Cyclists riding bikes along the water in Warren County NY

Bike Bells for Cyclists & Walkers

Multiuse paths like the Warren County Bikeway are used by walkers, runners, & cyclists of all levels.  Using a bell helps inform a path user when they are being passed.  Here are some guidelines for all path users on bell usage.  The goal is to make the path safe and pleasurable for everyone.

Cyclists

  • Bell sounds typically travel farther than voice. Try ringing the bell at twice the distance you would normally use to call out “On your left”. Experiment with a good distance. If a Pedestrian is startled, then try ringing at a greater distance. Your cycling behavior should never frighten slower path users as you go past them.
  • When in voice range optionally call out “On your left”.
  • Look for earbuds. Pedestrians (walkers & runners) with earbuds may not have heard the signal.
  • Look for small children and dogs who are more likely to suddenly move into the passing area.
  • Slow down as needed to pass when it is safe to do so.
  • Pass wide in case the pedestrian suddenly changes direction.
  • Smile and say, “Thank You!” when passing.

Walkers/Runners

  • Walk on the right side of the path. This is different from a road where pedestrians walk on the left, against traffic.
  • Listen for a bell.
  • Give a hand wave or some other signal acknowledging that you are aware of the cyclist passing.
  • Be predictable, do not suddenly move to the left.
  • If occupying the center area of the path, consider moving slightly to the right.
  • Keep dogs on a short leash and out of the passing area (BTW: Dogs are not allowed on the Warren County Bikeway).
  • When moving to the left, first look back to see that it is safe to do so.
  • Consider only using one earbud to better hear oncoming signals.

References:

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